Although arrests and a proposed Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) designation worked in dismantling the Atomwaffen Division (AWD), the immediate rebranding of the group under a new name undermines the success of the law enforcement response.
No single factor explains why people withdraw from high-risk activism or political violence; disengagement typically happens because of growing disagreements over time as opposed to singular triggering events.
Although participation in violent extremism is often thought of as ideologically driven, it is better understood as driven by a need for identity and belonging.
Moonshot is a global social enterprise working to end online harms, applying evidence, ethics, and human rights to this endeavor.
Peer-reviewed research on radicalization and violent extremism identifies a “basic structure of the process of radicalization” where an individual has “real or perceived political grievance(s),” perceives participation in violent extremism as somehow appealing or beneficial, and has a “personal vulnerability” expressed as certain personality traits or a mental health concern.
“Violent extremism” must be reconsidered from the standpoint of local women, rather than from a “narrow, Western-centric, and male-dominated” perspective—a move that reveals, in the context of Iraq and Syria, the inclusion under that label of violence attributed not only to Salafi-Jihadist groups but also to government forces, “government-affiliated militias,” and patriarchy.
New research from Mercy Corps and the Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice finds that access to secondary education reduces support and for violent extremist groups.